'Justice Sen's impeachment not unconstitutional'



New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday refused to declare as unconstitutional the impeachment proceedings that had been initiated against former Calcutta High Court judge Soumitra Sen.

A bench headed by Justice Aftab Alam dismissed a PIL filed by an advocate who was junior to Sen when he was a practicing lawyer.

Refusing to entertain the petition filed by Subhasish Chakraborty, the bench said that it cannot interfere with Parliament's proceedings.

The impreachment process, however, could not be concluded as the high court judge resigned five days before the matter was to be taken up in Lok Sabha.

The petitioner had alleged that the proceedings against Sen were "arbitrary" and "unconstitutional" and they should be quashed.

The bench, however, was not satisfied with his submissions and dismissed the petition.

Impeachment process against Sen were initiated for his alleged irregularities and misconduct. An Inquiry Committee, set up by Rajya Sabha Chairman, had held Sen guilty of misconduct.

Rajya Sabha had passed the motion against Sen, the first judge to have been impeached by the Upper House for misconduct.

Sen, however, faxed his resignation to President Pratibha Patil on September 1, five days ahead of the process being initiated in Lok Sabha.

Sen was found guilty of misappropriating Rs 33.23 lakh under his custody as a court-appointed receiver in the capacity as a lawyer and misrepresenting facts before a Calcutta court in a 1983 case.

PTI